Dragon Fruit Blueberry Tea Gummies

The first time I discovered tea flavored gummies I was at Surfas, a true chef’s paradise and my favorite culinary store in Los Angeles. I found myself moseying through the glorious candy aisle, when bam!, there they were: blackberry hibiscus gummy bearstotally over-priced but quite possibly the cleverest tea & food invention around.

Since that first bag of tea gummy bears, I’ve taken to the kitchen several times to experiment with tea gummy recipes. With the weather heating up this week, I was inspired to make a tropical version of these treats using Tea of the People’s Blueberry x Dragon Fruit Dragon Well Green Tea. This vibrant Lung Ching blend is sweet, tangy, and packed with exotic fruit flavor. You can literally taste the antioxidants and vitamins in the brew, which takes on the most gorgeous shade of ruby-red after a few short minutes of steeping.

My best secret for flavor-packed tea gummies is to steep the tea in juice instead of water. Drop for drop, the candy base will pack equally concentrated tea and fruit flavor. An overnight, cold steep in the fridge produces a brew that’s pure in taste and not cloudy.

I have to admit that I find the shape of dragon fruits to be quite puzzling…attractive, yet rather odd. Dragon fruits actually come from cactus plants. In taste and texture, their flesh tastes a lot like bland kiwi. The color of a dragon fruit’s flesh is either white or hot pink, and is characteristically flecked with small, black seeds. If you’re lucky enough to find one, don’t be scared…try it! That being said, the less adventurous can easily swap out kiwi for dragon fruit in this recipe.

Just like regular gummy candies, these gourmet tea gummies yield a chewy, thick bite that you can really sink your teeth into. If candy molds aren’t your thing, then simply pour the liquid mixture into a baking dish, let it chill, and cut the jelly sheet into small squares. In less than an hour, you’ll be in tea gummy bliss. Guilt-free, antioxidant-packed snacks to munch on whenever you want…there’s lots to love about this adult take on a childhood favorite!

Many thanks to Joshua Caplan, Founder of Tea of the People for sharing his delicious teas with me! Check out the Tea of the People site for more enticing and unique tea flavors, including Acai x Goji Dragon Well and Pomegranate x Yumberry Dragon Wellalso great for making antioxidant gummies.

Dragon Fruit Blueberry Tea Gummies

Makes 5 cups of gummies.


2 1/2 cups organic blueberry juice (no sugar added)

2 rounded Tbsp green tea (I used Tea of the People’s Dragon Well Green Tea, Blueberry x Dragon Fruit)

3/4 cup gelatin

1/2 dragon fruit or 2 kiwis, skin removed

1/2 cup organic blueberries

1/4 cup agave or honey

1 tsp stevia

non-stick vegetable oil spray


large pitcher



candy mold or 9 x 13 baking pan

large pot

large glass measuring cup (with a spout)


1.)  In a large pitcher, cold steep the tea by combining it with the 2 1/2 cups of blueberry juice. Mix in the tea leaves so that they are able to fully and freely steep. Set this in the fridge to chill for 6-8 hours, then strain the leaves from the juice until ready to make the gummies.

2.)  Purée the 1/2 dragon fruit (the white flesh only, not the tough pink rind) and 1/2 cup of blueberries in a blender on high. Set aside. Mix the gelatin into 1 1/2 cups of the blueberry juice tea, and allow it to bloom.

3.)  Pour the other 1 cup of blueberry juice tea and the dragon fruit-blueberry purée into a large pot and bring it to a boil over low heat. When it comes up to heat, dump the bloomed gelatin into the hot juice-tea-puree mixture and let it gradually and completely dissolve. Turn off the heat, then skim off and discard any foam off the surface of the mixture. Mix the agave and stevia in until dissolved.

4.)  Give the candy mold or baking pan a very light, even spray of vegetable oil. Pour the mixture from the large pot into a liquid measure. Fill each cavity of the mold, carefully pouring directly from the liquid measuring cup. If using the baking pan, pour the entire amount of the mixture from the large pot to the baking pan. Place the filled molds or pan into the fridge or freezer until the gummies are fully set and firm to the touch. In the freezer, it will only take about 5 minutes for the candy mold gummies to set.

5.)  Use your fingers to remove the gummies from their molds. If using the candy mold, repeat steps 4 & 5 as many times as it takes to use up all the tea mixture. If the gelatin tea mixture starts to set in the measuring cup, give it a zap in the microwave for 10 seconds to return it to a liquid state. Store gummies in the fridge in an airtight container.

Tea of the Week: Sunflower’s Jasmine Tea

For me, this orange and gold tin conjures up my first memories of Chinese tea. Sunflower’s Jasmine Tea is the classic and basic choice in many Chinese households, like Twinings is in the UK or Lipton is in the US. I can’t be positive, but I don’t think their packaging has ever changed over the past 30 years, and that’s part of this brand’s nostalgic charm…it’s an oldie, but a goodie.

This isn’t an expensive or rare tea–it’s a practical tea, something you can enjoy everyday without breaking the bank. The brew has a nice balance where you can taste the green tea and floral notes equally, without either flavor being more pronounced. You can find it at almost all Chinese grocery stores and definitely somewhere in your local Chinatown. If you are new to Chinese teas, the brew is a must-try. It’s exceptionally popular and pleasing to a variety of palettes.

I never separate or strain the tea leaves apart from my jasmine tea brew. I find it almost therapeutic to see the little cuts of leaves swimming and sinking in my teacup, just like they do when I go out for dim sum or Chinese food. An occasional tea leaf may accidentally sneak by and get swallowed, but take it from a Cantonese girl– the brew really shouldn’t be enjoyed any other way. That being said, over brewing this tea will bring out it’s bitter flavors, so be careful abut your water temperature.

Tasting Notes for Sunflower’s Jasmine Tea:

BREWING TIPS:  Although the package directions say to brew with boiling water, I like to brew this blend at about 160 degrees F, letting the leaves continue to brew as the water temperature cools. A small pinch per cup of water produces a light brew, which is ideally how it should be enjoyed.

THE BLEND:  Brown, thin, twisted tea leaves with a few jasmine flower petals mixed in .

THE SCENT:  Very floral and soft. Not as strong as rose scented tea, but delicate and very slightly perfume-like.

THE STEEP:  The body of the liquor is light but will continue to become heavier as the leaves have a chance to steep longer. Similarly, the brew will start off looking buttery yellow and later become a burnt orange color. When it starts to turn orange, it’s time to top off with more hot water.

GET IT:  The blend is available at Chinese markets, Chinatowns, and even on Amazon!

FOOD PAIRING:  This is the quintessential dim sum tea, so it would go amazingly well with any of my Dim Sum Recipes, but particularly any steamed dumplings like Siu Mai, Ha Gao or Shrimp & Asparagus Pouch Dumplings.

Dim Sum Recipe # 9: Chicken Curry Puffs

Without a doubt, there are many subjects that my mother-in-law and I don’t see eye to eye on. Luckily, our mutual love of cooking is what usually leads us back to friendlier, more lighthearted territory. Just when our conversations start heating up, I default to asking her about which recipes she’s been working on or meaning to try. She’s a talented and passionate cook, so this method of diversion works every time, and my hubby (who’s breathing a huge sigh of relief at this point) fully encourages it.

One of the specialties that my mother-in-law is well-known for are Chicken Curry Puffs, a spicy baked dim sum treat. My husband grew up on these, and they are hands down his favorite food. Anytime he realizes that there’s a tray of these flavorful puff pastry pockets coming out of the oven, my usually reserved hubby instantly becomes unabashedly greedy, like a grabby little kid.

The most common places to find Chinese-style curry puffs are dim sum restaurants and bakeries. During a dim sum tea lunch, the baked triangles arrive on the same cart that other baked goods like char siu bao and dan tat come rolled in on. If you get caught up in the chaos of yelling out your dim sum order, you might accidentally skip over these simple-looking pockets not realizing that they have a yummy, savory curry filling tucked inside.

My mother-in-law has a secret non-Chinese ingredient that she uses to give these puffs an extra boost of vibrant curry flavor–Thai red curry paste. Thai red curry paste is more pungent and hotter than plain curry powder is, and adds fullness, moisture, and a tinge of orangey color to the flavorful ground chicken filling.

If you are in the mood for buns instead of turnovers, you can easily swap out this filling for the pork filling in my Honeyed BBQ Pork Bun recipe. As always, don’t overfill turnovers and buns. This way, the filling and flavor stays put in the center of the pocket, right where it should be.A traditional drink to enjoy with these Chicken Curry Puffs is a bold, rich cup of fermented black Pu-erh tea, a brew strong enough to stand up to all the big aromatic curry flavors here. Another option is to serve these golden turnovers with a chilly glass of Thai Iced Tea. If you love the combination of sweet and spicy, this is an incredibly satisfying tea and food pairing that you really shouldn’t miss!

Dim Sum Recipe #9:  Chicken Curry Puffs

Makes 18 puffs.


1 lb. ground chicken

3 Tbsp vegetable oil

1/2 brown onion, finely chopped

2 Tbsp red curry paste

2 Tbsp Asian curry powder

1/2 tsp salt

1 Tbsp soy sauce

1/2 tsp sesame oil

2 Tbsp sugar

1/4 tsp black pepper

1 Tbsp rice wine or sherry

1/4 cup chopped cilantro

3 green onions, green parts only, thinly sliced

1-1 lb package puff pastry, thawed

1 egg mixed with 1 tsp of water

2 Tbsp sesame seeds


large wok or skillet

large plate

work surface

2 large sheet pans fitted with parchment or silicone baking mats

1 Tbsp measure

pastry brush


1.)  Heat 3 Tbsp of oil in a large wok on medium-high heat. Add the chopped onions, and cook for a few minutes until the onions are slightly softened. Add the curry paste, curry powder, and salt and cook for another few minutes until the onions are soft. Increase the heat to high then add the ground chicken, and mix in with the onions until thoroughly incorporated.

2.)  While the chicken is still cooking, add the soy, sesame oil, sugar, and black pepper and stir those ingredients in. When the chicken has fully cooked and is no longer pink, add the rice wine and let it cook out. Turn off the heat and place the chicken filling mixture on a large plate to cool.

3.)  When the filling has cooled to room temperature, mix in the chopped cilantro and sliced green onion.

4.)  Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Unfold the puff pastry out into one layer on a work surface. Cut into 9 equal squares, each about 3″ x 3″. Fill each square with 1 Tbsp of the filling, being careful not to overfill. Lightly dab the inner edges of the pastry square with water, then fold one side of the square onto the other to create a turnover. Pinch the edges together firmly to seal them. Place the turnovers on a large baking sheet, about 1″ apart from one another. Repeat this process for all 18 turnovers, placing 9 on each tray.

5.)  Brush each turnover with egg wash (an egg mixed with 1 tsp water), then sprinkle with sesame seeds. Bake turnovers for 15 to 17 minutes or until pastries are puffed and golden brown.

Lychee Oolong Tea

After I finished my post from yesterday on Bird Pick Tea in Pasadena, I just had to throw this simple recipe together.  I typically pair lychees with green tea in the summertime, but mixing it with oolong during the colder months is a season-appropriate and welcome change.

Oolong is a semi-oxidized tea that comes from China and Taiwan.  Since it’s darker than green tea and lighter than black, it’s sometimes called “blue tea.”  After picking, tea leaves are left to oxidize anywhere from 25 -75%.  The resulting leaves are then pan-fried to stop oxidation, then sometimes rolled or twisted, giving the tea its characteristic look and taste.

Darker varieties like the one I use in this recipe have at higher level of oxidation and look almost like black tea.  Lighter, less oxidized oolong tea leaves are commonly rolled into little balls or pellets.

Oolong has a fruity, honey-like taste, making it perfect for pairing with lychee fruits.  In this recipe, the tea is later diluted by lychee syrup, so it’s a good idea to steep the tea stronger.  I use canned lychees all the time in light desserts but I think they are most useful in the winter when the fresh ones aren’t available.  In this drink, they take the place of boba tapioca balls, and are lighter and easier to prepare.  When mixed with oolong, the finished lychee-infused tea will give off a sunny, soft golden hue, just what you need to press through these dreary days of winter.

Lychee Oolong Tea

Makes 4 drinks.


1 can lychees in heavy syrup

6 cups water, boiled to 190 degrees F

2-3 rounded Tbsp oolong tea leaves



mesh strainer

teapot with strainer



hot water kettle

large drinking glasses

“fat” drinking straws (the boba tea kind)


1.)  Drain heavy syrup of lychees into a medium bowl.  Cut lychees into a 1/4″ dice, then place them into the same medium bowl with the syrup.  Place in fridge to chill.

2.)  Brew oolong tea for 4 minutes and strain into a medium size pitcher.  Set aside to cool to room temp, then place in fridge to chill.

3.)  When time to serve, fill glasses with ice until half full, then pour tea until the glass is 3/4 full.  Scoop out 2 rounded tablespoons of the diced lychees in each glass, then fill the lychee syrup into the glasses until full.

And if you enjoy lychee, please check out my other posts for Lychee Granita and Lychee Vodka Tea Jellies where the fruit is enjoyed with green tea!